There’s no getting around the fact that the New York Rangers have missing pieces in their roster. However, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to come up with an idea of what the fourth line should look like.
A few seasons ago, the New York Rangers had the problem of having too much young talent. They didn’t know who to turn to as starters. However, with the moves they made in this last season, the depth is depleting faster than they’d like to admit.
That doesn’t mean there aren’t players capable of being solid enough to manage a fourth line together. In fact, there is one combination that works rather nicely.
Of course, this is assuming all the players are still on the team come time for the start of the season. With that in mind, here is the best fourth line combination that’s possible with the current Rangers’ roster.
The Ideal Fourth Line
The recent signing of Jimmy Vesey was a great contract. It worked for the Rangers because they’ll continue to see Vesey grow. It worked for Vesey becasue he gets more time to prove himself to be a consistent scorer.
He should definitely be able to move up during the season, at which time someone in the minor leagues could take his place. However, to start the season, it might not be a bad idea to put him on the fourth line and have him work his way up.
Ryan Spooner would be the ideal center to the Rangers’ fourth line. Now, the team hasn’t signed him yet, and he requested salary arbitration. They’ll have to decide come early August if he’ll stick around.
His first few games for the team since being traded as part of a package deal for Rick Nash were good. He showed himself as a play-maker rather than a goal scorer. That’s something the Rangers can appreciate and should be willing to give a chance to.
Lastly, Boo Nieves is a perfect fit for a fourth line. The strong and tall 24 year old will bring some strength to an otherwise “finesse” based line. He made an immediate impression on the Rangers, and given the right time and trust on the ice, he has a bright future ahead of him.
Why It Works
The Rangers will be in the middle of rebuilding, most likely thinking about other things during the season. The last thing they should be worrying themselves over is the strength and skill of their fourth line.
The combination of these players gives the line an equal amount of skill and grit. The Rangers’ ability to roll four lines will be key to their success. And part of doing that is starting with the right ideas regarding chemistry, experience, and most importantly, who can work their way up beyond the fourth line.